Ohio Democratic Chairman Chris Redfern’s Statement on Kasich’s Televised Refusal to Support Mitt Romney

COLUMBUS, OHIO – Today, during an appearance on Meet the Press, Ohio Governor John Kasich adamantly refused to put his support behind presidential contender Mitt Romney, claiming that “Everybody I endorsed or was for dropped out or didn’t run.” In response, Ohio Democratic Party Chair Chris Redfern issued the following statement:

“Despite his full embrace of John Kasich’s disastrous attempt to end collective bargaining rights for teachers, firefighters and other public employees, Ohio’s governor is refusing to stand behind Mitt Romney’s toxic candidacy. Even someone as out of touch as John Kasich knows that Mitt Romney will hurt Ohio’s middle class and take our state back to the failed economic policies of the past.”

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Ohio Democratic Chairman Chris Redfern Condemns Ohio Republicans Attack on Voting Rights

COLUMBUS, OHIO – In response to Ohio Senate passage of SB 295, the Republican bill to repeal HB 194 and end early voting the weekend before election day, Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern released the following statement:

“Once again, Columbus Republicans are blatantly ignoring the will of hundreds of thousands of Ohio voters that want to restore voting rights and put HB 194 on the ballot in November. The bill Senate Republicans supported today attempted to reinstate some of the most egregious parts of HB 194, including cutting off the three-day early voting window right before Election Day, the busiest voting time of the year. Instead of fixing this misguided legislation, Republicans are attempting to bury the same voter suppression tactics by hiding them in hundreds of pages of laws.

This is another sneak attack on voting rights in Ohio, and is not a simple repeal of HB 194.

Much like SB 5 and Issue 2, Republicans know that they’ve set themselves up for yet another embarrassing defeat at the polls, so they’re scrambling to obstruct a statewide referendum vote on their voter suppression bill. This bill makes it harder for people to vote, and Ohioans across the state will see through these games.”

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3 Reasons Josh Mandel Will Continue Repeating “Misleading,” “Ridiculous,” “Pants On Fire” Falsehoods

In Jaw-Dropping Report, Mandel “Doubles Down” On Previously Debunked False Claims; Promises To Repeat Lies “Again And Again

COLUMBUS, OHIO – This weekend, after receiving yet another “Pants on Fire” rating from Politifact Ohio for the “dead wrong” assertion that Sen. Sherrod Brown is responsible for Ohio jobs that have gone to China, Josh Mandel doubled down on his right to proudly spew misinformation to Ohio voters, shockingly declaring that he would repeat his previously debunked false claims “again and again.”

That’s right — Josh Mandel doesn’t care if he’s lying.

From The Plain Dealer:

“Others back down or soften their rhetoric once their statements have been publicly scrutinized, but Mandel doubles down. Consider his response in an interview last week when asked again to identify a single Ohio job that went to China because of a decisive vote by Brown.”

“‘If that’s the level of specificity you’re looking for, you’re the reporters — you go do the grunt work,’ said Mandel, who lives in Beachwood.

“…PolitiFact Ohio already had done the ‘grunt work’ and found that the examples cited by Mandel’s campaign failed to back up his claim, hence the Pants on Fire rating. Right or wrong, Mandel vowed to repeat the assertion ‘again and again’ and said he sees no downside.

The Washington Post said Mandel was creating “new frontiers in political dishonesty”:

“Indeed, in forthrightly admitting that he won’t be substantiating his claims because there’s no downside in repeating a debunked assertion again and again, Mandel for once deserves points for honesty.”

Josh Mandel will continue parroting outright lies against Sen. Brown because a look at his own record shows him to be just another politician who isn’t on the side of middle class Ohioans and cares more about running for office than creating jobs.

1.  Mandel’s not on the side of middle class Ohioans and can’t be trusted to create jobs.

  • He would have voted to let the auto industry die, putting nearly 850,000 Ohio jobs related to the industry in jeopardy.
  • He embraced Issue 2, Governor Kasich’s brutal assault on public workers’ rights to collectively bargain.
  • And to this day, he refuses to support Sen. Brown’s bipartisan bill cracking down on China’s unfair currency manipulation, a practice that hurts our middle class and costs Ohio jobs.

2.  He won’t protect Medicare and Social Security.

  • Mandel has joined the far-right wing of the Republican Party, pledging support for a Tea Party budget proposal that “would inexorably subject Social Security and Medicare to deep reductions.”

3.  He has completely ignored his job on behalf of taxpayers.

  • Josh made history as the first “modern-era” treasurer to skip his first 14 meetings of the billion-dollar Board of Deposit he is supposed to chair.
  • Only after being caught red-handed in the Bahamas raising money from payday lenders did he show up for his first Board of Deposit meeting.
  • He allowed banks to commit alleged fraud against taxpayers and retirees for more than a year before taking action.

“Determined to distract from his anti-middle class agenda and record of failure in the Treasurer’s office that stems from ignoring his job, Josh Mandel has embraced a campaign strategy of peddling falsehoods and outright lies even after they’ve been debunked by nonpartisan fact check organizations,” said Ohio Democratic Party spokesman Andrew Zucker. “Josh’s promise to repeat these debunked lies ‘again and again’ in an effort to avoid explaining his opposition to the auto rescue, support for making devastating cuts to Medicare and Social Security and refusal to embrace efforts to crack down on China’s illegal currency manipulation is clear evidence that Mandel’s respect for Ohio voters goes no further than the ballot box.”

BACKGROUND

Mandel Has Repeatedly Been Called Out For “Hurling Wild Charges,” and “Misleading” and “Ridiculous” Claims.  In a December 2011 editorial, the Akron Beacon Journal wrote “Mandel has been hurling wild charges.”  Politifact has twice given Mandel a “Pants of Fire” rating labeling Mandel’s statements as “ridiculous” in December 2011 and in November 2011.  And on the front page of the Plain Dealer on December 8, 2011, the Plain Dealer noted that Mandel would raise “eyebrows with statements often found to be far from truthful.”  [Akron Beacon Journal, 12/7/11; Politifact, 11/14/1112/7/11; Plain Dealer via Politico, 12/8/11]

Almost 850,000 Jobs In Ohio Are Supported By The Auto Industry.  According to the Center for Automotive Research, there are 848,304 jobs in Ohio supported by the auto industry.  [Center for Automotive Research – Industry Contribution Report, April 2010, pg. 48]

Mandel Said He Was Developing A Plan To Save The Auto Rescue.  The Youngstown Vindicator reported “Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate, said he is developing a plan to ‘rescue the auto industry.'” [Youngstown Vindicator, 3/2/12]

  • Mandel: “I’m Not Saying The Bailout Didn’t Work.”  The Youngstown Vindicator reported “‘I’m not saying the bailout didn’t work,’ Mandel said.” [Youngstown Vindicator, 3/2/12]
  • Next Sentence: Mandel Disagreed That Auto Rescue Save The Auto Industry.  The Youngstown Vindicator reported “But Mandel said he ‘respectfully disagreed’ that it saved the American auto industry.” [Youngstown Vindicator, 3/2/12]

Mandel Supported SB 5.  In May 2011, the Dayton Daily News reported “Mandel, a former city councilman, said he supports Senate Bill 5 but has not taken a position on Ryan’s Medicare plan.” [Dayton Daily News, 5/25/11]

Josh Mandel Has Signed the Cut Cap and Balance Pledge [Cut Cap Balance Act.com Senate signers, accessed 11/09/2011]

Center On Budget And Policy Priorities:  Cut, Cap And Balance “Would Inexorably Subject Social Security And Medicare To Deep Reductions.”  According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, proponents of Cut, Cap and Balance “seek to foster an impression that the measure would protect Social Security and Medicare.  Such an impression would not be accurate.  The legislation would inexorably subject Social Security and Medicare to deep reductions.”  [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 7/16/11]

Mandel Signed Cut, Cap, and Kill Medicare Pledge Which Will Force Deep Cuts to Social Security and Medicare. Mandel signed a radical Cut, Cap, and Kill Medicare budget pledge. “The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities noted that budget proposal for force deep cuts to both Medicare and Social Security.  CBPP wrote “It is inconceivable, however, that policymakers would meet the bill’s severe annual spending caps through automatic across-the-board cuts year after year; if they did, key government functions would be crippled.  Policymakers would have little alternative but to institute deep cuts in specific programs.” [Cut Cap Balance Act.comsigners, accessed 7/19/2011; Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, 7/16/11]

Mandel Silent On Sen. Brown’s China Currency Bill For Manufacturers – Spokesman Said Mandel Wouldn’t Be Commenting On Issues Before The Senate. In December 2011, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported “Mandel also would not give his opinion on a foreign trade bill promoted by Brown and supported by small Ohio manufacturers as well as Portman, a former White House trade ambassador. Brown’s bill would authorize economic sanctions against China if authorities found China manipulated its currency, providing its exports with an unfair pricing advantage. Some conservatives say punitive tariffs might start a trade war. Asked about these issues, Mandel spokesman Joe Aquilino said that the candidate is not a Washington politician and, ‘consequently, for the next year we’re not going to pretend like he’s there and voting on every bill that’s introduced or that’s on the floor.’” [Cleveland Plain Dealer, 12/24/11]

June 2010: Mandel Accused State Treasurer Campaign Opponent Boyce Of “Cronyism And Corruption” For Giving A Low-Bid Contract To State Street Bank When Boyce’s COS’s Friend Was Hired As A Lobbyist. In June 2010, the Columbus Dispatch reported, “Mandel has accused Boyce of ‘cronyism and corruption’ because he awarded a low-bid state investment contract to a Boston firm whose lobbyist is a friend of Amer Ahmad, deputy treasurer and chief financial officer in Boyce’s office. Noure Alo, a Columbus attorney specializing in immigration, was hired as a lobbyist by State Street Corp. about a week after the firm submitted what was later determined to be the winning bid for a state contract to invest $32 million in Ohio pension funds. State Street is under investigation in California for possible fraud involving $56 million in state pension funds there. The California state treasurer calls the company ‘crooks.’” [Columbus Dispatch, 6/17/2010]

August 2010: Mandel Criticized Opponent Boyce For Investing With State Street Bank. In August 2010, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported that during the campaign for Ohio state Treasurer, “Mandel blasted [opponent Kevin Boyce] for investing with State Street Bank, which is being sued in California for allegedly charging that state’s pension funds too much in fees. Boyce said few banks can handle the state’s global assets and finding one that hasn’t been sued by someone for something would be nearly impossible.” [Cincinnati Enquirer, 8/31/2010]

June 2011:  Mandel Sent Letter To Attorney General Asking For An Investigation.  In June 2011, Crain’s Cleveland Business reported “Ohio state Treasurer JoshMandel sent a letter last Tuesday, June 14, to state Attorney General Mike DeWine requesting a full investigation into foreign currency exchange practices of the custodial banks for the state’s employee pension funds and the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation.” [Crain’s Cleveland Business, 6/20/11]

March 2012: Mandel Announces JP Morgan Chase And CitiBank Will Oversee Over $41 Billion In Pension Assets.  The Dayton Daily News reported “Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel will give custodial contracts to JP Morgan and CitiBank to oversee $41.3 billion in international assets held by the state’s four largest public pension systems and will sever ties with the two banks that were awarded the work in 2010.” [Dayton Daily News, 3/19/12]

Friday, March 9th:  Josh Mandel Flew To The Bahamas For A Fundraiser.  In March 2012, The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported “Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, already criticized by Democrats for missing official state meetings, flew to the Bahamas last Friday to give a speech to the payday lending industry, The Plain Dealer has confirmed. Mandel held a fund-raiser for his U.S. Senate election campaign while at the Bahamas resort, a spokesman acknowledged when the newspaper asked.”  [Cleveland Plain Dealer, 03/13/12]

Mandel “Began Traveling Widely To Raise Money” Just Months After Being Sworn In As Treasurer.  In March 2012, The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported “Months after taking his seat as Ohio’s treasurer in January 2011, he began traveling widely to raise money — $5.8 million so far, records show — for his Senate campaign. He is expected to have one of the deepest campaign chests of any Senate challenger this year.”  [Cleveland Plain Dealer,03/13/12]

Mandel Missed His 14th Consecutive State Board Of Deposit Meeting, And He’s Just Fine With That.  In February 2012, The Columbus Dispatch reported “State Treasurer Josh Mandel missed his 14th consecutive Ohio Board of Deposit meeting yesterday — and he’s just fine with that.  Mandel has skipped every monthly meeting of the board, of which he is chairman, since becoming treasurer in January last year. Instead, as in the past, he sent a designee, Seth Metcalf, the agency’s chief financial officer.”  [Columbus Dispatch, 02/24/12]

Mandel Scheduled A Fundraiser In D.C. For Two Hours Before A State Board Of Deposit Meeting In Columbus.  In January 2012, Politico reported that they had “obtained an invitation for a D.C. fundraiser on behalf of Mandel set for Thursday morning — just two hours before the next scheduled board of deposit meeting in Columbus.”  [Politico.com, 01/25/12]

Headline:  Josh Mandel, Ohio Treasurer And Senate Candidate, Skipped Board Meetings For No Known Reason. [Huffington Post, 02/24/12]

Mandel’s Schedule Barely Acknowledged Board of Deposit Responsibilities.  In February 2012, The Huffington Post reported “Josh Mandel, the Republican Ohio treasurer looking to move up to the Senate seat held by Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown, appears to have skipped meetings of the state Board of Deposit for mysterious reasons.” Huffington Post continued, “According to the records, Mandel had nothing on his schedule on five different occasions when the board met. On two other occasions, Mandel blocked out time for the meeting, but a Democratic source said that the board’s minutes show Mandel did not attend. On four other days, Mandel’s schedule says he met with staffers at the time of the board meeting, but the staffers actually were at the meetings, not with Mandel, according to the minutes.  One time Mandel did a radio interview instead of attending the board meeting, and last month he went to a fundraiser in Washington, D.C., instead of presiding over the meeting. This past Thursday, he did not attend for unknown reasons, but traveled to another part of the state later in the day to meet with business leaders, according to the Columbus Dispatch.” [Huffington Post, 02/24/12]

Rep. Tim Ryan Calls on Senate Republicans, Mitt Romney, Josh Mandel to End Support for Tax Subsidies to Big Oil

WASHINGTON, DC – Representative Tim Ryan (OH-17) released the following statement calling on Senate Republicans to support the Menendez amendment to end tax subsidies to Big Oil and instead invest in renewable energy:

“Everyday, Ohioans are paying more at the pump while Washington Republicans, Mitt Romney, and Josh Mandel push to funnel billions of dollars in subsidies to Big Oil. It’s unconscionable that people in Akron, or Columbus, or Cincinnati are forced to bankroll Big Oil companies with their tax dollars while they’re gouged at the pump.

“My Republican colleagues in the Senate should stand up for the hardworking families in Ohio and across the country and support the Menendez amendment. With this vote, Republicans should support President Obama’s all-of-the-above energy policy and take a step toward fostering the type of clean energy policies that will save families thousands of dollars over time. Republicans other option is to march in lock step with Mitt Romney and Josh Mandel and shamelessly cater to Big Oil donors who benefit from these wasteful subsidies.

“Mitt Romney and Josh Mandel keep beating the drum to protect special interests and corporate executives, and they want Ohioans to foot the bill. Tonight, I hope Senate Republicans take a step away from Mitt Romney and Josh Mandel and do what they can to help Ohioans back at home deal responsibly with the rising costs of energy.”

Ohio Democratic Party Announces Staff Changes

COLUMBUS – Today, the Ohio Democratic Party announced changes to its staff as it puts in place a team for victory in 2012 and beyond. Joining the Ohio Democratic Party, Jerid Kurtz will start as Communications Director, and Meredith Tucker has been hired as Deputy Communications Director. Andrew Zucker will move to Press Secretary.

A lifelong Ohioan, Jerid Kurtz was raised by a family of autoworkers in Dayton and graduated from Miamisburg High School.  Moving north, Kurtz spent nearly ten years in Cleveland, earning a B.A. in Political Science and English, and a law degree from Case Western Reserve University. Prior to joining the Ohio Democratic Party in March of 2012, Kurtz was privileged to serve numerous Democratic allies, including Governor Ted Strickland and Congressman Tim Ryan. Kurtz also was part of the historic legislative fight to stop Senate Bill 5 in the Ohio State House and end the Republican attacks on workers’ rights.

“Once again, all eyes are on Ohio, and I’m excited to be part of the team that’s fighting to re-elect President Obama, Senator Sherrod Brown, and Democrats across the state,” said Kurtz.

Meredith Tucker began her career of political and legislative work in Northeast Ohio, where she worked for Cuyahoga County Commissioner Peter Lawson Jones. In 2008, she served as the GOTV Coordinator for Obama for America in Athens, Ohio. After the 2008 cycle, Meredith worked for various campaigns, helping elect Democrats at the local and statewide level. In 2010, she relocated to Columbus to serve as Representative Debbie Phillips’ legislative aide for the Ohio House Democratic Caucus. During Meredith’s time there, Representative Phillips was re-elected to the House and elected to a leadership position as Assistant Minority Whip.

Most recently, she served as the Regional Communications Director in Southern, Southeastern, and Eastern Ohio for the We Are Ohio campaign, resulting in the defeat of Senate bill 5 (Issue 2). Meredith is a native of Lakewood, Ohio; and a proud alumna of Ohio University where she studied political science with a specialization in American Politics.

Andrew Zucker joined the Ohio Democratic Party as Deputy Communications Director in October 2011, taking on the role of Press Secretary in March 2012. A Solon, Ohio native and proud alumnus of Ohio University in Athens with a degree in political communication strategies, Andrew cut his teeth on then-Senator Barack Obama’s historic campaign for president in 2008, crisscrossing the country – from Chicago to Colorado, Iowa to Texas and Minnesota where, as Youth Vote Director, he built the largest and most effective youth vote program in the country. Before joining ODP, Andrew worked for the AFL-CIO as Ohio Deputy Communications Director.

“Seth Bringman has been a tremendous asset to the Ohio Democratic Party and a friend and advisor to our candidates, staff and activists across Ohio,” said Ohio Democratic Party Executive Director Kyle McDermott. “Seth has forever raised the bar on what it means to be a member of the staff of the Ohio Democratic Party and although they have big shoes to fill, we are confident that the additions of Jerid Kurtz and Meredith Tucker will ensure the ODP continues to have a strong and effective communications team.”

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Why Did Josh Mandel Allow Alleged Fraud Against Ohio Taxpayers For More Than A Year?

Mandel First Claimed Bank Fraud In June 2010, But Did Nothing For More Than A Year While Raising Money For His Senate Campaign

COLUMBUS, OHIO – Yesterday, after months of scathing headlines over his refusal to do his job and being caught red-handed jetting to the Bahamas to solicit money from payday lenders, Josh Mandel’s Treasurers office changed campaign tactics, outrageously anointing Josh a protector against fraud because he replaced two banks accused of defrauding pensions.

But Josh Mandel sat idly by for more than a year after he said our tax dollars were being abused.

In what can only be described as a shocking disregard for the Ohioans who trusted him to do his job, Josh allowed what he claimed to be fraud against taxpayers and retirees for more than a year, despite alleging bank fraud 21 months prior while campaigning for office in 2010.

Here’s what we know:

  • 21 months ago in June 2010, Mandel first alleged fraud by Bank of New York Mellon and State Street.
  • Nine months ago in June 2011, he asked Attorney General Mike DeWine to investigate “foreign currency exchange practices of the custodial banks” such as BNY and State Street.
  • Despite turning it into a campaign issue, only yesterday did he actually take action.

Why did it take Josh Mandel more than 14 months after his swearing in to finally take action on behalf of taxpayers? Why, if protecting retirees and taxpayers from bank fraud was such a priority, did he wait more than 14 months before addressing his own accusationsWhy didn’t he go to work for Ohio taxpayers on day one?

The answer is simple. Josh Mandel has put “election to higher office above every other consideration” and attended just 1 of 15 Board of Deposit meetings, completely ignoring his job while running for U.S. Senate from the Treasurer’s office.

Ohioans are left wondering whether Josh is completely incompetent, just doesn’t care about his obligations to taxpayers, or both.

“If Josh Mandel was serious about protecting retirees and taxpayers from banks committing alleged fraud, he’d have stopped it on his first day as treasurer, not 14 months later after being caught red-handed in the Bahamas raising money from payday lenders and blowing off 14 straight Board of Deposit meetings,” said Ohio Democratic Party spokesman Andrew Zucker. “That it took Josh more than a year to take steps to stop taxpayer dollars from being invested in banks he himself accused of committing fraud is a stunning display of incompetence and the most damning evidence yet that Mandel’s only priority is landing his next promotion, even at the expense of Ohio voters who expect for him to do his job.

BACKGROUND

June 2010: Mandel Accused State Treasurer Campaign Opponent Boyce Of “Cronyism And Corruption” For Giving A Low-Bid Contract To State Street Bank When Boyce’s COS’s Friend Was Hired As A Lobbyist. In June 2010, the Columbus Dispatch reported, “Mandel has accused Boyce of ‘cronyism and corruption’ because he awarded a low-bid state investment contract to a Boston firm whose lobbyist is a friend of Amer Ahmad, deputy treasurer and chief financial officer in Boyce’s office. Noure Alo, a Columbus attorney specializing in immigration, was hired as a lobbyist by State Street Corp. about a week after the firm submitted what was later determined to be the winning bid for a state contract to invest $32 million in Ohio pension funds. State Street is under investigation in California for possible fraud involving $56 million in state pension funds there. The California state treasurer calls the company ‘crooks.’” [Columbus Dispatch, 6/17/2010]

August 2010: Mandel Criticized Opponent Boyce For Investing With State Street Bank. In August 2010, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported that during the campaign for Ohio state Treasurer, “Mandel blasted [opponent Kevin Boyce] for investing with State Street Bank, which is being sued in California for allegedly charging that state’s pension funds too much in fees. Boyce said few banks can handle the state’s global assets and finding one that hasn’t been sued by someone for something would be nearly impossible.” [Cincinnati Enquirer, 8/31/2010]

June 2011:  Mandel Sent Letter To Attorney General Asking For An Investigation.  In June 2011, Crain’s Cleveland Business reported “Ohio state Treasurer JoshMandel sent a letter last Tuesday, June 14, to state Attorney General Mike DeWine requesting a full investigation into foreign currency exchange practices of the custodial banks for the state’s employee pension funds and the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation.” [Crain’s Cleveland Business, 6/20/11]

March 2012: Mandel Announces JP Morgan Chase And CitiBank Will Oversee Over $41 Billion In Pension Assets.  The Dayton Daily News reported “Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel will give custodial contracts to JP Morgan and CitiBank to oversee $41.3 billion in international assets held by the state’s four largest public pension systems and will sever ties with the two banks that were awarded the work in 2010.” [Dayton Daily News, 3/19/12]

Friday, March 9th:  Josh Mandel Flew To The Bahamas For A Fundraiser.  In March 2012, The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported “Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, already criticized by Democrats for missing official state meetings, flew to the Bahamas last Friday to give a speech to the payday lending industry, The Plain Dealer has confirmed. Mandel held a fund-raiser for his U.S. Senate election campaign while at the Bahamas resort, a spokesman acknowledged when the newspaper asked.”  [Cleveland Plain Dealer, 03/13/12]

Mandel “Began Traveling Widely To Raise Money” Just Months After Being Sworn In As Treasurer.  In March 2012, The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported “Months after taking his seat as Ohio’s treasurer in January 2011, he began traveling widely to raise money — $5.8 million so far, records show — for his Senate campaign. He is expected to have one of the deepest campaign chests of any Senate challenger this year.”  [Cleveland Plain Dealer,03/13/12]

Mandel Missed His 14th Consecutive State Board Of Deposit Meeting, And He’s Just Fine With That.  In February 2012, The Columbus Dispatch reported “State Treasurer Josh Mandel missed his 14th consecutive Ohio Board of Deposit meeting yesterday — and he’s just fine with that.  Mandel has skipped every monthly meeting of the board, of which he is chairman, since becoming treasurer in January last year. Instead, as in the past, he sent a designee, Seth Metcalf, the agency’s chief financial officer.”  [Columbus Dispatch, 02/24/12]

Mandel Scheduled A Fundraiser In D.C. For Two Hours Before A State Board Of Deposit Meeting In Columbus.  In January 2012, Politico reported that they had “obtained an invitation for a D.C. fundraiser on behalf of Mandel set for Thursday morning — just two hours before the next scheduled board of deposit meeting in Columbus.”  [Politico.com, 01/25/12]

Headline:  Josh Mandel, Ohio Treasurer And Senate Candidate, Skipped Board Meetings For No Known Reason. [Huffington Post, 02/24/12]

  • Mandel’s Schedule Barely Acknowledged Board of Deposit Responsibilities.  In February 2012, The Huffington Post reported “Josh Mandel, the Republican Ohio treasurer looking to move up to the Senate seat held by Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown, appears to have skipped meetings of the state Board of Deposit for mysterious reasons.” Huffington Post continued, “According to the records, Mandel had nothing on his schedule on five different occasions when the board met. On two other occasions, Mandel blocked out time for the meeting, but a Democratic source said that the board’s minutes show Mandel did not attend. On four other days, Mandel’s schedule says he met with staffers at the time of the board meeting, but the staffers actually were at the meetings, not with Mandel, according to the minutes.  One time Mandel did a radio interview instead of attending the board meeting, and last month he went to a fundraiser in Washington, D.C., instead of presiding over the meeting. This past Thursday, he did not attend for unknown reasons, but traveled to another part of the state later in the day to meet with business leaders, according to the Columbus Dispatch.” [Huffington Post, 02/24/12]

Board Of Deposit Meeting TODAY At 3:30 PM: Will Absentee “Treasurer” Josh Mandel Make It 15 In A Row?

Mandel Hasn’t Attended A Single Monthly Meeting Of The “Powerful” State Board That “Decides Which Banks Will Hold Billions In State Deposits.” 

COLUMBUS, OHIO – Today at 3:30 PM marks the 15th state Board of Deposit meeting since Josh Mandel has become “Treasurer” and Ohioans are wondering if he will finally show up and do his job.

The “powerful” state Board of Deposit makes “billion dollar decisions” with Ohio’s tax dollars, and Josh Mandel has made history as the first “among modern-era Treasurers” for never attending.

Last week, Mandel was caught attending a fundraiser – get this – in the Bahamas, instead of actually staying in Ohio and doing the job taxpayers depend on him to do.

WHO:             “Treasurer” of Ohio Josh Mandel (maybe)

WHAT:          State Board of Deposit Meeting

WHEN:          TODAY, Monday, March 19, 2012 at 3:30 p.m

WHERE:       30 East Broad Street
9th Floor, Conference Room B
Columbus, Ohio 43215

With Biden In Toledo, Lordstown Auto Workers Denounce Josh Mandel For Opposition To Auto Rescue

Like Romney, Santorum, Josh Mandel Would Have Voted To Let Auto Industry Die, Risking Nearly 850,000 Ohio Jobs

YOUNGSTOWN, OHIO – Today Ohio Democrats and Lordstown Auto Workers held a press conference to denounce “Treasurer” Josh Mandel for his opposition to the auto rescue championed by Senator Sherrod Brown that saved the American automobile industry from collapse.

From Mahoning Valley Democratic Party Headquarters, Mahoning County Democratic Party Executive Vice Chair Ken Carano, State Senator Joe Schiavoni (D-Canfield), State Representative Ron Gerberry (D-Youngstown), State Representative Bob Hagan (D-Youngstown) and Elizabeth Williams, a worker at GM’s Lordstown auto plant who joined Senator Brown at this year’s State of the Union, decried Josh Mandel for opposing critical investments that saved the auto industry with nearly 850,000 Ohio jobs in the balance.

Below are excerpts from their prepared remarks:

“We still don’t know which Republican presidential hopeful will appear on the Ohio ballot this November, but our Super Tuesday primary made one thing totally clear – by nominating Josh Mandel in the race to take on Senator Sherrod Brown, Ohio Republicans have ensured that the top TWO Republicans leading their ticket here in Ohio are folks that opposed critical investments championed by Senator Sherrod Brown that saved the American automobile industry from collapse,” said Representative Ron Gerberry. “Like Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum, Josh Mandel would have voted to let the auto industry die, putting nearly 850,000 good, middle class jobs tied to the industry in jeopardy.”

Senator Joe Schiavoni pointed to GM’s Lordstown plant, which builds the best-selling Chevy Cruze, as evidence that the auto rescue was an inarguable success.

“Three years ago, facing the looming threat of bankruptcy, GM was forced to cut shifts down to one. Thanks to the auto rescue Senator Brown championed, the plant has more than doubled its workforce, from 2,000 to 4,500 workers, working three shifts around the clock to keep up with demand for the best-selling Chevy Cruze that’s built right here in the Mahoning Valley,” he said, adding that, “It’s a testament to the fine workers here, the product that they build and folks like Senator Brown who stood and fought to save good, middle class jobs that GM has reclaimed its title as the world’s best-selling auto manufacturer.”

Elizabeth Williams, a single mother of two who has worked at GM since 1994, spoke personally about being laid off when GM and Chrysler faced the possibility of bankruptcy.

“To politicians like Josh Mandel, I was a statistic, a political pawn used to score cheap political points against Democrats like Senator Brown who were fighting to save our jobs when it wasn’t popular. Josh Mandel would have voted to let the auto industry die, leaving workers like myself with nowhere to turn,” Williams said. “Senator Sherrod Brown chose a different path. He fought – to save GM and Chrysler, help them to reopen plants and put people like myself back to work building great American cars.”

Williams continued, “Today, I am thrilled to be back at work for General Motors building the best-selling Chevy Cruze and I am thankful for champions like Senator Brown who care about our jobs and our industry, and had our backs when we needed it the most.”

Williams attended this year’s State of the Union speech in Washington D.C. as a guest of Senator Brown.

BACKGROUND

Almost 850,000 Jobs In Ohio Are Supported By The Auto Industry.  According to the Center for Automotive Research, there are 848,304 jobs in Ohio supported by the auto industry.  [Center for Automotive Research – Industry Contribution Report, April 2010, pg. 48]

Mandel Said He Was Developing A Plan To Save The Auto Rescue.  The Youngstown Vindicator reported “Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate, said he is developing a plan to ‘rescue the auto industry.'” [Youngstown Vindicator, 3/2/12]

  • Mandel: “I’m Not Saying The Bailout Didn’t Work.”  The Youngstown Vindicator reported “‘I’m not saying the bailout didn’t work,’ Mandel said.” [Youngstown Vindicator, 3/2/12]
  • Next Sentence: Mandel Disagreed That Auto Rescue Save The Auto Industry.  The Youngstown Vindicator reported “But Mandel said he ‘respectfully disagreed’ that it saved the American auto industry.” [Youngstown Vindicator, 3/2/12]

Since 2009 Lordstown Plant Has More Than Doubled Their Workforce In Order To Keep Up With Demand.  In 2009 General Motors reduced the shifts at the Lordstown Auto Plant from three shifts to one when auto sales plummeted.  Today the plant staffs 4,500 employees, up from 2,000, working three shifts around the clock to keep up with the demand of the Chevy Cruze.  [Cleveland Plain Dealer, 08/31/11; Cleveland Plain Dealer, 02/23/10]

September 2011: The Chevy Cruze Built In Ohio Was The #1 Selling Compact Car in America For Five Straight Months And Was The Top Selling Car Of Any Size In June 2011.  In September 2011, the Plain Dealer reported “Most of the workers at General Motors’ Lordstown plant had never worked on a best-selling car until this year.  The Chevrolet Cruze has been the No. 1 compact car in the country for the past five months. It was the top-selling car of any size in June.” [Plain Dealer, 9/7/11]

January 2012:  General Motors Becomes Top-Selling Global Automaker For First Time Since 2008.  In January 2012, the Associated Press reported “General Motors Co. has retaken the title of world’s top-selling automaker, selling just over 9 million cars and trucks across the globe.  The company said Thursday that it sold 9.03 million vehicles worldwide last year, up 7.6 percent from 2010. That’s more than 1 million better than Japan’s Toyota Motor Corp., which took the title away from GM in 2008.” [Associated Press, 1/19/12]

Bahamas: 1, Board of Deposit: 0

After Blowing Off All 14 Board Of Deposit Meetings, Absentee “Treasurer” Josh Mandel Ignores His Job To Raise Cash In The Bahamas

COLUMBUS, OHIO – A stunning report in yesterday’s Plain Dealer revealed that last Friday our absentee Treasurer Josh Mandel was once again not doing his job on behalf of Ohio tax-payers so he could jet out to — wait for it — the Bahamas. For a fundraiser. Seriously.

From the Plain Dealer:

“Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, already criticized by Democrats for missing official state meetings, flew to the Bahamas last Friday…”

“Mandel held a fund-raiser for his U.S. Senate election campaign while at the Bahamas resort, a spokesman acknowledged when the newspaper asked.”

“…His weekday trip to the Atlantis Resort on Paradise Island in the Bahamas is certain to stoke Democratic Party charges that the short-time treasurer has ignored his job.”

Of course, this isn’t the first time Josh has been caught red-handed neglecting his duties as treasurer. Last August the Plain Dealer reported that “within a month of becoming Ohio’s treasurer, Josh Mandel started traveling away from the state — to New York, Utah, Washington, D.C.” Weeks later, money began rolling into his Senate campaign from those exact locations.

And Josh is the first treasurer of the modern era to have skipped every single meeting of the billion-dollar Board of Deposit he is supposed to chair. Mandel’s neglect of responsibilities as a public servant  led the Plain Dealer to editorialize that Josh Mandel “puts election to higher office above every other consideration” and the Associated Press to report that Josh Mandel is “focused on politics.”

As of now, Josh Mandel’s whereabouts for 12 of the 14 Board of Deposit meetings remain totally unaccounted for and he has refused to explain the absences.

“Since launching his Senate campaign from the treasurer’s office just weeks after his swearing in, Josh Mandel has made it clear he has zero interest in fulfilling his responsibilities as a public servant or doing his job on behalf of Ohio taxpayers,” said Ohio Democratic Party spokesman Andrew Zucker. “That Josh has time to jet off to the Bahamas for a fundraiser after skipping every meeting of the billion-dollar Board of Deposit is further evidence that Mandel would rather do anything in pursuit of his next job than keep his promise to the voters who elected him Treasurer.”

BACKGROUND

Friday, March 9th:  Josh Mandel Flew To The Bahamas For A Fundraiser.  In March 2012, The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported “Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, already criticized by Democrats for missing official state meetings, flew to the Bahamas last Friday to give a speech to the payday lending industry, The Plain Dealer has confirmed. Mandel held a fund-raiser for his U.S. Senate election campaign while at the Bahamas resort, a spokesman acknowledged when the newspaper asked.”  [Cleveland Plain Dealer, 03/13/12]

Mandel “Began Traveling Widely To Raise Money” Just Months After Being Sworn In As Treasurer.  In March 2012, The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported “Months after taking his seat as Ohio’s treasurer in January 2011, he began traveling widely to raise money — $5.8 million so far, records show — for his Senate campaign. He is expected to have one of the deepest campaign chests of any Senate challenger this year.”  [Cleveland Plain Dealer,03/13/12]

Mandel Missed His 14th Consecutive State Board Of Deposit Meeting, And He’s Just Fine With That.  In February 2012, The Columbus Dispatch reported “State Treasurer Josh Mandel missed his 14th consecutive Ohio Board of Deposit meeting yesterday — and he’s just fine with that.  Mandel has skipped every monthly meeting of the board, of which he is chairman, since becoming treasurer in January last year. Instead, as in the past, he sent a designee, Seth Metcalf, the agency’s chief financial officer.”  [Columbus Dispatch, 02/24/12]

Mandel Scheduled A Fundraiser In D.C. For Two Hours Before A State Board Of Deposit Meeting In Columbus.  In January 2012, Politico reported that they had “obtained an invitation for a D.C. fundraiser on behalf of Mandel set for Thursday morning — just two hours before the next scheduled board of deposit meeting in Columbus.”  [Politico.com, 01/25/12]

Headline:  Josh Mandel, Ohio Treasurer And Senate Candidate, Skipped Board Meetings For No Known Reason. [Huffington Post, 02/24/12]

  • Mandel’s Schedule Barely Acknowledged Board of Deposit Responsibilities.  In February 2012, The Huffington Post reported “Josh Mandel, the Republican Ohio treasurer looking to move up to the Senate seat held by Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown, appears to have skipped meetings of the state Board of Deposit for mysterious reasons.” Huffington Post continued, “According to the records, Mandel had nothing on his schedule on five different occasions when the board met. On two other occasions, Mandel blocked out time for the meeting, but a Democratic source said that the board’s minutes show Mandel did not attend. On four other days, Mandel’s schedule says he met with staffers at the time of the board meeting, but the staffers actually were at the meetings, not with Mandel, according to the minutes.  One time Mandel did a radio interview instead of attending the board meeting, and last month he went to a fundraiser in Washington, D.C., instead of presiding over the meeting. This past Thursday, he did not attend for unknown reasons, but traveled to another part of the state later in the day to meet with business leaders, according to the Columbus Dispatch.” [Huffington Post, 02/24/12]

Ohio Democratic Party Statement on State Representative Weddington’s Resignation

COLUMBUS – Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern issued the following statement today regarding Columbus state Rep. W. Carlton Weddington’s decision to resign his legislative seat:

“In order to restore much needed trust in our elected officials, we cannot abide wrongdoing by Republicans or Democrats. Elected officials must serve their constituents and place them first before their own careers and personal reward.

“We are disheartened by the news that Rep. Weddington, a fine public servant in so many ways, is resigning. We must now let justice run its course with the understanding that each person is considered innocent until proven guilty.

“Let this be a cautionary tale for all public servants. Citizens demand and deserve our undivided attention to address their need for good paying jobs, quality healthcare, affordable higher education, Social Security and Medicare.

“The vast, overwhelming majority of Democratic elected officials and candidates go to work each day and toil on behalf of their constituents. So while we are saddened by the alleged misconduct of Rep. Weddington, we cannot let one story of a fallen public servant distract us from our mission to stand up for working families and our pledge to fight to build a stronger middle class.”

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Paid for and authorized by the Ohio Democratic Party, not authorized by any federal candidate or campaign committee. David Pepper, Chairman, 340 East Fulton St, Columbus, Ohio 43215.